Steadfast efforts to end the senseless prohibition of raw milk sales in Arkansas have finally been successful, at least in a somewhat limited sense. Residents living in the Natural State will now be able to purchase raw milk directly from the farms where it is produced, thanks to the recent passage of House Bill 1536. However, raw milk sales at farmers markets and retail stores will still be prohibited under the new law.
According to ArkansasOnline.com, Governor Mike Beebe recently signed into law HB 1536, also known as Act 1209, following its passage by the state’s General Assembly back in April. The bill will allow for the incidental sale of locally-produced raw milk directly from the farm, given that the farmer posts a sign at the entrance to the farm indicating that its milk products are not pasteurized or regulated by the state.
The new rule will also require that raw milk farmers affix standard labels to milk containers notifying customers that the milk is not pasteurized. These same farmers, whether they produce raw cow’s milk or goat’s milk, will be barred from selling more than 500 gallons of it per month, presumably an effort to keep as tight of a lid as possible on this growing segment of the grassroots dairy industry.
Previously, Arkansans wanting raw cow’s milk had to either bootleg their milk from nearby states with fewer authoritarian restrictions, or find a local farmer willing to gift it to them without official payment. Raw goat’s milk, on the other hand, had previously been legal for on-farm sales only, with the caveat that only 100 gallons of it be sold a month. That restriction will be increased to 500 gallons per month under HB 1536.
“Thank you Jesus, we don’t have to drive to another state and bootleg raw milk anymore,” wrote one commenter on a recent announcement posted at A Campaign for Real Milk, a project of
The Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF). “This is a great day in Arkansas!” …
I was very concerned and skeptical about raw milk, but after researching the real risks and benefits, I drank a bunch of whole raw milk in milkshakes. When I started to feeling sick it helped me recover quickly. I believe this is because there are immunity factors in raw milk which are disabled by pasteurization. The site http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/raw-medicine.html agrees:
Here’s a partial list of some of the more biologically active ingredients identified in bovine colostrum that helps explain why it’s such a potent tool for healing:
Immunoglobulins IgG, IgA, IgM, IgE, IgD: Large, complex sugar/protein (glycoprotein) molecules (also known as antibodies) used by the immune system to find and deactivate pathogens such as bacteria and viruses.
Transforming Growth Factor Beta: Stimulates growth and repair of the gastro-intestinal tract.
Epidermal Growth Factor: Biochemically regulates cellular growth, cellular division and cell type. Fosters rapid tissue repair.
Glutathione: Powerful antioxidant that offers protection to cells from free radicals.
Interferons: Specialized proteins that inhibit replication of viruses within cells throughout the body.
Interleukins: A large group of signaling molecules that help regulate the immune system.
Oligosaccharides: Groups of 3-10 sugar molecules that protect against pathogens by competing for binding sites on the intestinal epithelium and provide support to friendly probiotic bacteria.
Proline-rich Polypeptide (PRP) or Colostrinin: Anti-inflammatory hormone that helps regulate immune system activity by stimulating the thymus gland.
Transferrin: Immune system glycoprotein that binds free iron, which, in turn, inhibits bacterial growth.
In cows, newborn calves import up to 90% of their immunity to pathogens and disease from the first 24 hours of suckling. Human newborns get the bulk of their mother’s immunity transferred to them prior to birth (across the placenta) but still need that first colostrum to optimize their immune systems. Gentle reminder for all you mothers-to-be out there: whatever you do, make sure your infant gets its fill of your first milk, then continue to breast feed for as long as you can.
Update 2018: I now avoid all milk and just drink water. I don’t think adult humans need to drink the milk of another animal such as a cow. I still can’t kick the cheese habit, however.